Ruby Tuesday crushed, but buyout intrigue lingers

|About: Ruby Tuesday, Inc. (RT)|By:, SA News Editor

Ruby Tuesday (NYSE:RT) is down sharply after FQ3 results disappoint.

Same-restaurant sales fell 4% during the quarter to decelerate from the 3.1% drop in FQ2. Restaurant margin dropped 130 bps to 15.8% as some sales leverage peeled away.

"The casual dining environment remains highly challenging, promotional, as well as price competitive and our sales trends are reflective of these conditions," notes outgoing interim CEO Lane Cardwell.

Management confirms that board is still exploring strategic alternatives, including a potential sale.

Wall Street analysts are ignoring Ruby Tuesday, but Seeking Alpha contributor Michael Wiggins De Oliveira thinks the market isn't pricing in a likely buyout.

RT -11.43% premarket vs. a 52-week trading range of $1.69 to $5.39.

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